Linux 5.15 Delivers Many Features With New NTFS Driver, In-Kernel SMB3 Server, New Hardware

Written by Michael Larabel in Software on 13 September 2021. Page 2 of 2. 18 Comments

Other Hardware:

- Various Habana Labs AI accelerator driver updates.

- Working Ethernet for OpenRISC when using LiteX FPGA configurations.

- ASUS ACPI platform profile support.

- ASUS WMI handling enhancements around eGPU handling, dGPU disabling, and panel overdrive abilities.

- High resolution scrolling for the Apple Magic Mouse.

- The Apple M1 IOMMU driver was merged as an important step forward for bringing up more Apple M1 SoC components under Linux.

- NVIDIA Jetson TX2 NX support and other new ARM platforms/boards were added.

- AMD Van Gogh APU audio driver was added for the new AMD ACP5x audio co-processor.

- A new Realtek RTL8188EU WiFi driver to replace its existing staging driver code.

- Support for next-generation Intel "Bz" WiFi hardware support.

- Another water cooling pump sensor driver.

- Intel also added wired networking support for its Lunar Lake platform to the e1000e driver.

- Support for reading from the Nintendo OTP memory area.

- Arm SMCCC TRNG driver was added.

- Cirrus Logic Dolphin audio support.

General Kernel Activity:

- The PREEMPT_RT locking code was merged as a big step forward towards getting the real-time (RT) patches upstreamed in the Linux kernel.

- Amazon's DAMON landed for a data access monitoring framework that can be used for proactive memory recalamation and other features.

- Adapting the SLUB code to be RT-compatible.

- The introduction of VDUSE for vDPA devices in user-space.

- A short-lived change by Linus Torvalds himself was enabling -Werror by default for all kernel builds but after just days that was changed to only enabling -Werror for compile test builds.

- Better handling during memory reclamation for servers with multiple memory tiers.

- The new process_mrelease system call to more quickly free the memory of a dying process.

- Fixing a scalability issue that led to very long boot times on huge IBM servers taking as much as 30+ minutes to boot.

- Various scheduler improvements.

- Various power management improvements.

- BPF timers support and MCTP protocol support are among the network changes.


- Opt-in L1 data cache flushing on context switching as a security feature for the paranoid and other specialized conditions.

- Improvements around compile-time and run-time detection of buffer overflows.

- Additional protection around side channel attacks via clearing used registers prior to returning, making use of the compiler-side support.

- IMA-based measurements support for the Device Mapper code.

Stay tuned for our Linux 5.15 kernel benchmarks that are now firing up.

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Michael Larabel

Michael Larabel is the principal author of and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 20,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter, LinkedIn, or contacted via